Vishakha and other vs State of Rajasthan, 

Vishakha and other vs State of Rajasthan, 

Citation : AIR 1997 SC 3011

Sharon pursuing 4th BBA.LL.B HONOURS from Sathyabama institute of science and technology.

Background : 

Sexual harrasment of women in the work environment is an unavoidable and determined issue in India.

The Vishakha case was a critical stage towards resolving the issue of sexual harrasment in the working environment in India.

The judgment is as yet significant today and keeps on being a vital device in the battle against sexual harrasment.

Generally, the Sexual Harrasment at Work Place Act of 2013 expects to promote gender equality and guarantee a protected and stately workplace for all representatives in India.

Facts of the case :

  • Bhanwari Devi was functioning as a community worker  to promote women ‘s empowerment and improvement .
  • The issue began when bhanwari devi , stopped a child marriage that was occurring in a influential Gujjar family 
  • Around the same time 1992 , the Gujjar family assaulted i.e. gang raped Bhanwari Devi in the wake of stopping the child marriage.
  •  Because of absence of proof, the accused were acquitted by the preliminary court
  • Bhanwari devi and others filled a writ petition under the supreme court of India under the vishakha platform.
  • The filled PIL ( Public Interest Case) tried to resolve the issue of sexual harrasment of women at work place .

Issues raised : 

  • Whether sexual harrasment at working environment adds up to infringement of right of gender equality and right to life and Liberty ?
  • Whether the court could apply international convention in the absence of applicable measures under the existing ?
  • Whether the employer has any liability when sexual harrasment is done to his/her worker ?

Judgement :

On taking into account the absence of domestic law with respect to gender equality and protection from sexual harrasment at work place, the Court figured out the rules and standards to be seen at every one of the working environments until the enactment of legislation under Article 32 for the enforcement of fundamental rights of the Constitution. Adding on, the court pronounced this as a regulation under the ambit of Article 141 of the Constitution.

It will be the obligation of the employer or some other individual, so dependable in a work environment

  • To prevent the occurrence of any such occasions
  • To provide the workers of the association with effective components to handle the process ,settling, and prosecuting any such occurrences in the association.

That, for this reason sexual harrasment will incorporate any unpleasant physically arranged conduct, using any and all means, straightforwardly or by implication as:

  • Close actual contact and advances,
  • Request and demand for sexual favours,
  • Sexually oriented remarks ,
  • Showing of pornography ,

The Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act was passed in 2013 following  10 years of vishakha rules.

Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act of 2013 :

  • It is usually known as the POSH (Prevention of Sexual Harassment) Act.
  • The act expects to advance gender equality  and guarantee a protected and noble workplace for all employees in India.
  • The act defines the meaning of sexual harrasment in an detailed manner.
  • It has set out the procedure to file a complaint and request, and the move to be initiated.
  • The Act mandates managers to frame an Internal complaints committee (ICC) at every office or branch with at least ten employees.
  • The ICC has the power of a civil courts  in regard of gathering and summoning at any individual and requiring the development of records.
  • The ICC is headed by a senior female worker and individuals incorporate an outside part and two extra individuals.
  • The complaint should be filled in the span of 90 days from the date of the incident.
  • The woman can also appeal in the court against the order of the ICC in 90 days or less.
  • The arrangement of mediation is additionally accessible prior to sending off an examination.
  • As indicated by the act, no data about the woman, respondent, witness, request, suggestion, or course of action to be disclosed.
  • The act likewise determines punishment for false objections and proof.

Conclusion :

Perceiving the right to protection against sexual harrasment is a fundamental part of safe guarding women’s human rights . This is all a stage toward guaranteeing women’s freedom, equality of chance, and the right to a noble work environment. Therefore ,this case ends up being one of the defining moments in transforming society in the illumination of women’s strengthening.

FAQ : 

  1. Do I have to have a prevention of sexual harrasment policy ( POSH ) Policy ? 

Regardless of whether there are just two employees it is obligatory for your association to have a prevention of sexual harrasment policy. This strategy is ordered by the sexual harrasment of women at work place Act, 2013.

  1. Is it just for working women?

No, it is for each women who might get harrassed at a working environment. It very well may be a guest, specialist, expert or a client, in a real sense any women who is visiting your working environment.

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